Capitalization: Titles

February 5, 2009: Issue 276

Capitalize a title when it comes immediately before a person’s name, describes a designated authority, and is not set off by commas:
President Barack Obama
Pope Benedict XVI
Professor Patricia Prijatel

Don’t capitalize a title that comes after a person’s name:
Barack Obama, president of the United States

Don’t capitalize a title that stands alone:
the 266th pope

Don’t capitalize a title set off by commas, even when it comes before a name:
a Drake University professor, Patricia Prijatel

Don’t capitalize job descriptions:
architect Stephen Herlong
dietitian Jeannette Jordan
chef Cat Cora

Back to Style on the Go Archive
Back to BHG Stylebook Table of Contents